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Friday, November 13, 2015

Developing Interview and Resume Content

Developing interview and resume content is NOT as difficult as it seems. It can be very easy to develop content that will help you stand out from your competition. (And if you have never given thought to content development, well, that could explain why you are not winning. In the pageant world, content is KING! Content helps drive your interview, make your resume stand out, and can help you capture the crown, if utilized correctly.)

The more stuff you do or are involved in, the more you will have to talk about in your interview. That's obvious, right? The more you do, the more you can talk about. For example, if you have started your own seasonal clothing drive...that's something you can say that no other girl can. If you have been involved with your local youth group organization for 6 years and are now a counselor...that again is something no one else (or not many others can say). If you are just going to school, going to the mall, and watching movies...well, almost everyone else can say that! Note: I am not saying to just start doing random stuff all the time - develop a consistent plan with a cause that means something to you!

You need to be doing "stuff" to adequately separate yourself from other contestants. This "stuff" can include:
- volunteering on a weekly basis,
- participating in after-school (or in school) clubs/organizations (i.e. Student Government, Chess Club),
- attending local chapter meetings for organizations that are important you (i.e. SPCA, Chamber of Commerce, Breast Cancer Awareness etc),

Let me say this about volunteering: everyone should be volunteering. And if everyone is volunteering, you have to figure out a way to make your volunteering stand out. So choose a cause that is special to you and stick with it. While you can volunteer for a number of different causes, you should find one that is important to you and constantly be working on it. For example, if you spend 500 hours with St. Jude and help them raise $5,000...that sounds better than just working the registration desk at one charity event on one particular evening...ever.

You must use your time wisely! I know you have homework and household responsibilities, but start weighing your time and using it wisely! If you spend 2 hours each night on TV, you could use 1 of those hours each night to volunteer or plan your next fundraising event (think: 2 hours each night multiplied by 7 days each week = 14 hours you could be creating content).

Plus, the more thought and effort that you put into your "stuff", the more you will have to say! For example, if you helped raise over $10,000 for your favorite charity, you can then tell the judges that volunteering helped you become a very relatable person with excellent communication and networking skills! Trust me: that sounds a lot better than: "I spend my free time watching movies, eating potato chips, and picking my toes! You could also talk about being involved in Student Government and what it has taught you about being a good leader and a role model. Or you could talk about how being a Girl Scout for 12 years has taught you the value of commitment and given you a hard work ethic. What about sports? A 2-year commitment to a sports team could lead you to telling the judges that you are a team player, take direction well, and love setting goals and working hard to achieve them.

Content is KING - don't get it twisted! Start (wisely) investing your time in yourself and your content development so you can reap the benefits...and get that crown on your head!